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March 11 – March 18, 2011 Municipal Bond and Mutual Funds News – Solid Municipal Bond Week

municipal bonds

This week (March 11, 2011 – March 18, 2011) saw lots of news about Japan’s disaster and some movement away from risk. Union busting was in the news, after the success in Wisconsin. Tax-free Mutual funds saw continued outflows. The mutual funds we track were unchanged or up slightly this week and for the month, fund yields fell slightly. Longer duration mutual funds moved up more than shorter duration funds. The Weeks municipal bond news included:

  • The sale of the Phoenix Coyote NHL team requires a municipal bond sale. This is one type of bond we would run away from. Hopefully rich sports fans will buy the issue. (ESPN)
  • SEC Chairman Shapiro intends to ask Congress to boost their powers to regulate the municipal bond market. About time! (Dow Jones)
  • The California Public Employees Retirement System or CALPERS is using an assumed rate of investment return above and beyond their actuaries recommended one. Their main retirement pool is only 70% funded. They admit that there is a 50/50 chance that returns will be either higher or lower than projected. Not only is there a problem with lucrative pensions, the people managing the pensions are also a problem. (WSJ)

Vanguard Municipal Bond Mutual Fund Weekly Price Movement (Detailed stats)

Vanguard Tax-exempt Money Market fund (VMSXX) is yielding 0.12%, 0.0% for the week.

Vanguard Short Term Tax-Exempt Fund (VWSTX) +0.06% for the week.
Month to date: +0.12%. February 2011 +0.16%. Current Yield 0.8%.

Vanguard Limited Term Tax-Exempt Fund (VMLTX) 0.0% for the week.
Month to date: +0.18%. February 2011 +0.45%. Current Yield 1.41%.

Vanguard Intermediate Term Tax-Exempt Fund (VWIUX) +0.30% for the week. Month to date: +1.3%. February 2011 +1.52%. Current Yield 3.28%.

Vanguard California Intermediate term municipal bond fund (VCAIX) +0.37% for the week. Month to date: +1.67%. February 2011 +1.72%. Current Yield 3.47%.

Fidelity Municipal Bond Mutual Fund Weekly Price Movement (Detailed stats)

Fidelity Short-Intermediate Muni Income Bond Fund (FSTFX) +0.18% for the week.
Month to date: +0.36%. February 2011 +0.30%. Current Yield 1.77%.

Fidelity California Intermediate term municipal bond fund (FCSTX) +0.28% for the week.
Month to date: +0.56%. February 2011 +0.48%. Current Yield 1.79%.

See how the Fidelity intermediate term municipal bond fund (FCSTX) and Vanguard California intermediate term municipal bond fund (VCAIX) performed this week on this graph:

See how the municipal bond mutual funds we listed above performed this year on this graph:

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